Health and Safety,Ages 2 to 5 Years - Safety Measures Outside the Home
Before your child visits an unfamiliar home, ask whether
you need to be aware of any dangerous areas, weapons in the home, pets, or
other safety issues. Also, it is always a good idea to see the household
for yourself. Don't be afraid to voice any concerns you have about safety. You
are ultimately responsible for protecting your child.
Choosing child care
Before enrolling your child in
day care, evaluate the environment and talk with the care providers.
Ask questions about their safety guidelines. Identify any hazards and ask
how they are handled. Inspect the food preparation area and ask how often it is
cleaned and with what kinds of products. For more information, see the topic
Choosing Child Care.
Going along for the ride: Exercising caution
parents and caregivers want to share their favorite activities with their young
children. This can help build common interests and appreciation for exercise
and other pursuits. Be sure, however, to recognize the safety issues related to
these activities. Remember that your child's comfort and safety are most
- Keep your child safe in strollers and carts. Use the safety straps and follow the printed instructions. For
example, signs on shopping carts usually advise against putting a child in the
area reserved for shopping items.
- Use extra caution when riding bikes and tricycles. Make sure you and your child always wear
helmets and practice safe riding habits, such as avoiding busy streets. Bike
only during daylight hours.
- If your child rides a scooter, watch him or her at all times. Don't let your child ride near traffic, and have him or her wear a helmet, knee pads, and elbow pads. Wait until your child is a little older before you teach skateboard safety. It's not safe for children younger than 5 to use skateboards.
- Prevent sunburns by
taking extra precautions, such as applying sunscreen and putting on a hat
before going outdoors. Also, be careful your child does not develop
heat exhaustion from being out in warm temperatures.
Small bodies can develop these problems much more quickly than adults. Do not
keep your child out in warm weather for long periods. Keep water or other
drinks on hand, and never leave your child alone in a car, even with the
windows down. For more information, see the topics
- Monitor air pollution when planning to take your child with you for outdoor
activities. Children's lungs are especially sensitive to pollution. You can
check your newspaper or local weather station for details about air pollution